With the simple addition of green leafy vegetables as a power-packed smoothie or a jumbo family salad, busy moms can tap into increased energy and better health overall.
As busy moms making sure our little ones are eating balanced meals and getting enough sleep, we often miss important steps to health and wellness in our own lives. Finding time to meet the nutritional needs of our bodies can seem time-consuming and overwhelming. Sometimes we wait until we’re advised by a doctor or wellness professional to find out about an iron or potassium deficiency. Treating the problem is always harder than preventing it in the first place. Luckily, there are many easy and delicious shortcuts to adding important and essential nutrients to our daily diet.
Green leafy vegetables provide a wealth of vitamins and are packed with multiple nutritional benefits, and most women–most people of either gender, actually–don’t consume enough. The USDA recommends weekly consumption of at least 3 cups of leafy greens such as kale, spinach and chard. For women, that amount should be increased, especially if there is already a deficiency present.
How do we get the benefits of these power-packed veggies without having to crunch our way through a bowl of bitter greens at every meal? Smoothies and juice cocktails are a great way to get your greens; powdered versions of whole greens can be mixed with juice, water or even added to soups and cooked foods. Having a “big salad” night once a week is a fun way to add raw greens to the diet of the entire household. Make it a family affair by cutting up an array of vegetables and salad fixings into small, shredded or bite-sized versions. For picky eaters this is a good way to introduce new vegetables. Little fingers can try a tiny curl of kale or a diced beet rather than tackle a full serving of this new and possibly strange-looking vegetable.
Green Juice Cocktail
- 1 cup 100% juice blend such as mango, orange or cranberry
- 1 cup kale juice, more or less to taste (prepared in a blender or juicer)
- 1 tablespoon green superfood like Healthforce Naturals, Vitamineral Green
Mix above ingredients with a small whisk or fork and sip, enjoying the nutrients as they enter your body!
Raw kale salad with lemon and parmesan
- 1 bunch curly kale, washed well, stems removed, chopped thinly
- 1 cup pine nuts (no need to toast)
- 1 cup shredded parmesan cheese salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 lemon, juiced
- ½ cup olive oil
- Wash and dry the kale, then remove and discard the stems and chop it into strips by rolling the leaves into a ball and making thin slices.
- Going in the other direction, cut it again so you end up with a pile of nicely chopped greens.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the juice of one lemon and the olive oil. Add the pine nuts and cheese to the greens and toss them to combine.
- Add the dressing to the greens, and again, toss to combine. Salt and pepper lightly.
Family salad slaw
3 cups finely chopped veggies such as carrots, kale, beets, chard, cabbage .
Toss with dressing of choice. Enjoy!
Written by Michele Fulkerson